BJP appoints election in-charges for four states for assembly polls | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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BJP appoints election in-charges for four states for assembly polls

Jun 17, 2024 03:20 PM IST

The BJP has appointed Union ministers Bhupendra Yadav, Dharmendra Pradhan, G Kishen Reddy and Shivraj Singh Chouhan as election in-charges for Maharashtra, Haryana, Jammu & Khashmir and Jharkhand, respectively

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has appointed election in-charges for four states where assembly polls are scheduled for later this year. On Monday, the party appointed Union ministers Bhupendra Yadav and Ashwani Vaishnaw as in charge and co-in-charge for Maharashtra, while Union minister Dharmendra Pradhan and lawmaker from Tripura, Biplab Deb have been appointed as in-charge and co-incharge for Haryana.

Assembly polls are scheduled for later this year in Maharashtra, Haryana, Jammu & Khashmir and Jharkhand. (File Photo)
Assembly polls are scheduled for later this year in Maharashtra, Haryana, Jammu & Khashmir and Jharkhand. (File Photo)

In both the states the BJP’s performance in the recently concluded Lok Sabha polls has been subpar. In Maharashtra where the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) comprised of the BJP, NCP (Ajit Pawar) and the Shiva Sena (UBT), the coalition won just18 of 48 seats, while opposition’s Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) won 30. The Congress with 13 seats was the biggest gainer, while the BJP’s tally went down from 23 in 2019 to nine and its vote share was 43.55% as against the MVA’s 43.71%.

In 2019, the BJP won 105 of the 288 seats and formed the government in alliance with the Shiva Sena. A disagreement over power sharing led to a break in the alliance and the Shiva Sena joined the MVA. In June 2022, after the Shiva Sena split, the faction headed by Eknath Shinde joined the NDA and he was sworn in as the chief minister. The term of the House expires on November 26.

Yadav and Vaishnaw had a successful stint as state in-charges in Madhya Pradesh assembly polls last year and were credited for helping navigate the party towards success in the face of anti-incumbency. Yadav, who won his maiden Lok Sabha polls from Rajasthan’s Alwar and has retained his portfolio as minister for environment, forests and climate change was also overseeing elections in Odisha, where the BJP scripted history by ousting the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) after five terms in power.

“The appointment of Yadav and Vaishnaw is an indication that the party has deputed its winning team for the state, where among other issues the party needs to focus on keeping the allies together,” said a party functionary.

In Haryana, where the BJP lost five of the 10 seats, the party has been worried about losing support from major caste groups and is eyeing the influential Jat community. While Biplab, a former chief minister of Tripura, has been in-charge of the state, Pradhan, who won the Lok Sabha elections from Samabalpur in Odisdha, has overseen elections in a clutch of states including the politically crucial state of Uttar Pradesh. Elections have to be held in the state by November 3.

In Jammu and Kashmir, where elections have to be conducted by September as per the Supreme Court order, the party has appointed Union minister G Kishen Reddy as the election in-charge.

Union minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan and chief minister of Assam, Himanta Biswa Sarma have been given charge of Jharkhand. Here the party won only eight of the total 14 seats, down from 11 in 2019. The party had also lost the last assembly poll in the state. In 2014, the BJP formed government in the state after winning 37 of the 41 seats and Raghubar Das, a non-tribal leader, was appointed as CM. In 2019, the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) wrested power by winning 30 of the 41 seats. In January this year, Hemant Soren resigned as CM after being arrested by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in a land scam, and he has been succeeded by Champai Soren. The term of the Jharkhand assembly will end in December.

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